Sunday, the first of October, I watched the 6 am Sunday Morning Show with Jane Pauley. Joan Baez was one of the featured figures. Many of you will remember her in the 1960s as a political activist for the Civil Rights Movement headed by Martin Luther King, Jr.
I went to Wikipedia as a source and found that she and her family were Quakers, a religion that advocates peace. Joan Baez was dedicated to important human causes and protests related to peace. In the process, she has built a meaningful legacy.
As I review Dr. Emily Teipe’s chapter in her women’s history book, I see that much was happening besides the Civil Rights Movement. Native Americans organized the American Indian Movement, AIM, to raise the plight of the first people in the United States. Young Latinos initiated the Chicano Movement to combat racism and empower the plight of young Latinos with the leadership of Cesar Chavez. So much was happening at that time. And Bob Dylan’s song, Blowin’ in the Wind, symbolized these times.
Joan Baez dedicated sixty years of her life to justice, especially related to the Vietnam War, the Innocence Project, LGBT rights, the peaceful protests by the Iranian people, the U.S. invasion of Iraq, landmines, and encouraging young people to vote for candidates who advocated peace. The list of her music as a singer, songwriter, and activist is long, with exceeding credits in films. How impressive!
I was always interested in just the melody of songs; however, my late husband enjoyed the lyrics to music and would get so much meaning from it. The song, Blowin’ in the Wind by Bob Dylan has so much meaning in its words as it depicts those turbulent times.
Today, like those times in our past, we feel the turbulence and question what is going on in politics, the war in Ukraine and Israel, the world upsets, what we will leave our children and grandchildren, and life in general. I find a sense of peace and solace that there is an answer to all these struggles, which lies somewhere in the “wind.”
Take a moment and read the words aloud to the song, Blowin’ in the Wind, and see what you feel about your concerns about what is happening in the world today. And yes, We Shall Overcome, too.
As an 82-year-old, Joan Baez’s life today is to recognize that she does not have to solve everyone’s problems. She enjoys writing, painting, and singing, but now in a lower key due to aging. She still is involved in a lot of world problems and supports these. I found peace in her interview.